Got Green visited KCHA offices today to demand and advocate for the following. Photos courtesy of Ian Dapiaoen.
April 21, 2010
Dear KCHA Commissioners: Nancy Holland-Young, Michael Brown, Doreen Marchione, Peter Orser, Stephen Norman
WHO WE ARE:
Got Green is a community-based organization that has worked locally since 2008 to identify opportunities for low income workers, especially workers of color, to enter the new green economy. Got Green believes that home weatherization is a field that offers an accessible entry point to a living wage career pathway in the green construction industry.
- 1. KCHA SHOULD PAY THE PREVAILING WAGE FOR WEATHERIZATION WORK
In December 2009 KCHA contracted with WA Clean Energy Corps – modeled after the AmeriCorps program – to bring in workers making minimum wage ($8.55/hour) to weatherize KCHA properties. Got Green and the Obama Administration say these jobs should pay prevailing wages and be linked to future training opportunities, such as union apprenticeships, that provide a career pathway to family wage employment.
Got Green says KCHA must insure WA Clean Energy Corp workers are paid the prevailing wage for weatherization work; or discontinue the use of these minimum wage workers.
- 2. KCHA SHOULD APPLY SECTION 3 LANGUAGE TO WEATHERIZATION HIRING
Got Green believes that KCHA Residents – and other low income workers, like our Got Green trainees -should be prioritized for these jobs.
Section 3 (language that prioritizes hiring of public housing residents and low-income workers) of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 has traditionally been applied to construction jobs funded by HUD.
Got Green says KCHA should extend the use of Section 3 to weatherization contracts!
- 3. KCHA SHOULD USE WEATHERIZATION FUNDS TO CREATE A JOBS PROGRAM!
Got Green has met with KCHA staff a handful of times to discuss how our taxpayer dollars could be used to provide jobs for trained low-income workers. KCHA staff has said that their priority was in weatherizing homes, not “creating a jobs program.”
Got Green wants KCHA to use a portion of its stimulus dollars to establish a pilot project for weatherization work. We already have a certificate training program to prepare Section 3 eligible workers for this industry sector.
We ask the KCHA Board of Commissioners to direct its staff to incorporate Got Green’s weatherization training model that includes wages for 30 low income workers (some will be KCHA residents!) to weatherize 1,000 KCHA housing units in 2010-11. Got Green will provide other funds to pay for the crew supervisors, the vehicles, and the overhead – we just need KCHA to pay the trainees from the Federal weatherization monies!
We look forward to scheduling meetings with Commissioners and KCHA staff in the next 2 weeks to discuss our proposals.
Best regards, Got Green Representatives